1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My role involves running procurement mini-competitions from Frameworks. Negotiating contractual terms with suppliers. Preparing variations to contracts. Facilitating consensus meetings. Advising client teams on different routes to market. Maintaining discussions and keeping good relationships with suppliers. Assessing risks of contracts. Updating the contract data base to ensure good data capture.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have developed communication skills by speaking to various internal and external stakeholders. Improved my problem-solving skills to assess risk as well as likelihood of events occurring. Multi-tasking / organisational skills by managing emails and work loads which have numerous deadlines. Developed presentation skills by providing presentations to various stakeholders concerning my role in preparation for my End Point Assessment in CIPS Level 4
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
The range of skills I have developed and varying nature of the role means that the programme is very enjoyable. It has a good work / life balance, as well as ample opportunity to engage with training and extra curricular activities. The high level of responsibility and team I work in is positive on my development and enjoyment of the apprenticeship
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Relatively well organised. Have work to come into each day. Issues with the current college I am at which TfL are attempting to manage, with currently little success. The issue of potential cuts means that a job at the end of the course is uncertain which makes it very frustrating.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
My employer supports me through a range of contacts i.e. placement manager, lead sponsor, my sponsor, apprentice network team. All of these allow me to convey issues / challenges and be supported accordingly. Ability to speak openly is highly valued at TfL and means that there is no prejudice, which is good.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
Very little. Attend college 2 x per month. The college seem to lack organisation and don't seem to understand the requirements for the apprenticeship standard. The work is relatively straight forward so it isn't a 'do or die' kind of experience. However, it is still a concern, so much so that the contract is being cut for future cohorts of apprentices
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
The qualification corresponds somewhat to the workload. Unfortunately, the qualification is relatively dry and difficult to engage with. As most things, the practical experience is quite different to theory due to Public Sector legal requirements being a lot more stringent and difficult to deal with. It is frustrating on several levels
8. Are there extra-curricular activities to get involved in at your work? (For example, any social activities, sports teams, or even professional networking events.)
Yes there are apprenticeship networking events which are good to meet other apprentices and graduates. There is an LGBT group, Womens Group, BAME and other minority social groups within TfL which is good to see. Also various informal clubs and good working relationships which allows the frequent outing after work
9a. Would you recommend Transport for London to a friend?
As for all the reasons stated above. It is a supportive culture with a good set of benefits. They provide a good level of training. They clearly care about their staff and are passionate for what they do. It is a highly regarded company and looks good on a CV.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Transport for London?
Make sure to look at the behaviours and competenices during an interview. Show a real interest in the company and the work that you will be carrying out. Embrace the culture and throw yourself in to it. The more you put in the more you get out of the experience
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